By Dave Pehling
SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — Celebrated San Francisco metal veterans Acid King bring the band’s current tour celebrating the 20th anniversary of their landmark album Busse Woods to the Chapel Saturday night with support from Portland duo Wizard Rifle and rising LA band Warish.
Formed in 1993 by lead singer and guitarist Lori S., drummer Joey Osborne and bassist Peter Lucas (the first in a long string of rotating bassists), the power trio became one of the stalwarts of the San Francisco metal scene. Recording an EP and its debut album for the Sympathy for the Record Industry label, the group eventually moved on to Frank Kozik’s local Man’s Ruin imprint later in the decade.
The band would refine its lumbering, hypnotic riff magic to new heights on the rumbling 1999 opus Busse Woods on Man’s Ruin. Named after a forest area outside Chicago where delinquent kids would hang out, deal drugs and listen to music when Lori S. was a teen, the album It would later be reissued by Small Stone Records in 2004 with bonus tracks prior to the imprint releasing their follow-up III the next year. Acid King would go on hiatus for a time following that effort, but invitations to perform at European festivals prodded the band back into activity. With Scorched Earth Policy guitarist Mark Lamb joining the band as its latest bass player, the trio began playing regular local shows and gradually got together for a new album.
In 2015, Acid King issued what may be the band’s crowning achievement with the trio’s first new album in a decade, Middle of Nowhere, Center of Everywhere on Svart Records. Adding psychedelic atmospheres to their signature monolithic riffs, songs like “Silent Pictures” and “Coming Down from Outer Space” take the listener on an interstellar journey unlike anything Acid King has produced in the past. While the trio’s line-up went through another transition in 2017 with the return of bassist Rafa Martinez (who also plays in acclaimed metal duo Black Cobra) and the addition of new drummer Bil Bowman (a member of like-minded outfit Hornss), the band has maintained it’s high level of crushing intensity live with a variety of festival appearances on both sides of the Atlantic including the Austin Terror Fest, the Up in Smoke Festival 2018 in Switzerland, the Treefort Music Festival in Boise, Idaho, the Northwest Hesh Fest in Portland last month and an upcoming appearance at Levitation 2019 in Austin, TX.
The band is currently on one of it’s most extensive U.S. tours in years to commemorate the 20th anniversary of Busse Woods that was recently reissued by RidingEasy Records with new mastering and new cover artwork. Acid King brings their tour to a close with this hometown show at the Chapel Saturday night.
The trio is joined by the two bands who they’ve crossed the country with on the tour. Wizard Rifle was founded a decade ago by guitarist/vocalist Max Dameron and drummer/vocalist Sam Ford when the pair were attending college in Portland, OR. Bashing out a hectic, exploratory style of sludge metal that embraces elements of noise punk, complex prog rock and psychedelia, the duo has built a reputation for their kinetic stage performances. The band recorded their latest self-titled album with noted Portland-based producer/engineer Billy Anderson (Sleep, Melvins, Mr. Bungle), releasing it on Svart Records In late August. Opening band Warish is a talented psychedelic punk power trio led by pro skater and guitarist/singer Riley Hawk (the son of skate legend Tony Hawk) that only formed last year but has already issued an EP, a single and their brand new RidingEasy debut Down In Flames that came out last month.
Acid King with Wizard Rifle and Warish
Saturday, Oct. 12, 8 p.m. $18-$20